“Reserve” is a title that is thrown around pretty liberally in the wine industry, often without a whole lot of meaning. Most terms on a wine label have solid statistics or legal requirements behind them. For the wine to be called Pinot Noir, it needs to be at least 75% of that varietal. To list an official AVA like Arroyo Seco, at least 85% of the grapes have to come from within that appellation’s boundaries. But “Reserve” in the U.S. has no such definition, no required components. For the most part, it is simply a marketing moniker.
Until now. “The Reserve” is Blair Estate’s ultimate Pinot Noir. Everything about this wine is exceptional. “The Reserve” designation here has real meaning. Simply put, it is hand selected from the very best vines each vintage – held in “reserve” for special treatment and special occasions.
Here’s an excerpt from my vineyard log book from the 2013 vintage: “October 16. Walking Delfina’s, I left the refractometer behind and hand sampled for the very best grapes. Trusting my palate, I selected just enough fruit for five barrels worth of truly exceptional Pinot Noir. Clone 115 came from rows 18 thru 21. Rows 64 thru 66 gave us Clone 777. And Pommard 4 came off the south block’s rows 72 and 73.” These were the grapes destined for this first “The Reserve” release.
Only 125 cases were produced of Blair Estate 2013 “The Reserve.” The striking etched glass bottle with its red wax capsule has already won a Gold Medal for Label Design at the recent San Francisco Chronicle Wine Competition. It has also received a slew of great scores from top reviewers: 94 Points from Wine Enthusiast Magazine. 92 Points from both Tasting Panel Magazine and the International Wine Review. This is the Blair family’s ultimate statement in Pinot Noir from the Arroyo Seco – clearly putting the vineyard and the appellation on the map with California’s very best PN locales.
Respectfully, Jeffrey Blair
94 Points - Wine Enthusiast Magazine
92 Points - International Wine Review
92 Points - Tasting Panel Magazine
Gold, 90 Points - Affaris of the Vine
Gold - 2016 San Francisco International Wine Competition
Silver - Jefferson Cup Invitational